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Bibendum and Matthew Clark owner C&C Group reports drop in profit

Published:  16 May, 2018

C&C Group has reported a drop in full-year net revenue and profit with sales hit by severe weather in the second half.

In its annual results released this morning, the company announced a 4.9% drop in revenue to €548.2 million, with operating profit down 7% to €86.1 million for the 12 months ending 28th February 2018.

The business, which acquired Bibendum and Matthew Clark last month in partnership with AB InBev following the collapse of previous owner Conviviality, said its Tennents, Magners, and premium and wholesale businesses in the UK had “performed strongly”.

The group added it has found nothing unexpected in Matthew Clark and Bibendum so far, with “significant progress already made in stabilising the business”, said CEO Stephen Glancy.

“A strategically important acquisition for C&C, these acquisitions greatly enhances our route-to-market in the UK on-trade,” he said.

In addition, it said it had appointed David Philips as managing director of Matthew Clark.

Philips, who was finance director of Matthew Clark between April 2007 and November 2015, brought a wealth of knowledge and experience which would be invaluable in “re-establishing a robust control environment and moving the business forward to best meet suppliers and customer expectations,” said Glancy.

In Ireland, competitive pressure, as well as a currency hit of €2.4 million, negatively impacted the group’s reported revenue and profit for the year, said the business, but reported a "good year" in the performance of its craft and super premium drinks in Ireland.

Tennent’s was the driving force behind share growth in the group’s Scottish business, with revenues up 5%.

The financial year 2018 was a “significant year of progress for the group”, both in terms of strategic development as well as improved underlying performance, said Glancy.

"While the trading environment in our key markets of the UK and Ireland remained challenging, our branded portfolio returned to volume and revenue growth, outperforming the broader 'long alcoholic drinks' market."

The results were in-line with analyst expectations, despite weather disruption across the sector, and the company said it was “confident in its outlook”.